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Why do my joints pop and snap while I'm stretching?


Question: Why do my joints pop and snap while I'm stretching?
I'm a new dancer. I try to stretch every night so that I can do my splits soon. However, it scares me when I'm stretching because my joints make all sorts of popping and snapping sounds. Is this normal?
Answer: Most pops, cracks and snaps you hear while stretching are harmless and probably painless. They are actually the sounds of joints, ligaments or tendons. When a joint moves, the position of a tendon or ligament can change. When the tendon or ligament returns to its normal position it creates a popping sound.

Joint popping and cracking can also be caused by gases escaping from joints. This fluid, which contains gases such as oxygen and carbon dioxide, acts as a lubricant. When the joint pops or cracks, the capsule stretches and gas is being released.

If you feel pain or rubbing along with the cracking and popping, check with a doctor. Otherwise, joint popping and cracking is usually harmless.

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